Enhancing women’s access to quality midwifery services has become the focus of global efforts, with significant achievements over the past few decades in reducing maternal and newborn mortality. Increasing awareness and policy support has generated demand for qualified midwives. Yet, there is a constant challenge for practitioners to acquire the necessary practical competencies to deliver quality maternal and neonatal care. A new Agenda should include developing intensive, sustainable collaborations between education programmes, practice settings and government systems for supporting midwifery education.
Trained midwives can avert maternal and newborn deaths. With the support of international organizations and national policy initiatives midwifery has become a rapidly growing field, in which HEIs can play a critical role.
SafeMa is an E+ CBHE project which aims to create a new postgraduate programme in Advanced Midwifery Practice in Asia. The SafeMa E+ CBHE project focuses on postgraduate level training, providing advanced courses and guidance in developing research skills necessary to develop innovative new data-driven techniques.
SafeMa aims to advance partner HEIs’ capacities so as to generate and spread excellence in midwifery education and research.
Continuous interaction between the academic sector and the health sector will ensure that the developed curricula will have the right balance between theory and real practical skills. Professional training courses and two tiers of certification will be developed (Postgraduate Certificate & Postgraduate Diploma) in order to address the immediate upskilling and needs of the sector’s personnel in the areas around the Asian HEIs thus ensuring a more immediate impact. Moreover, the postgraduate programmes will require students to complete short internships in community/local hospital or health centers so as to acquire the necessary practical skills/experience and at the same time improving their employability prospects. Internship in rural areas and cooperation with NGOs and International Organisations will be strongly encouraged.
SafeMa Hubs for excellence in midwifery will be established in the participating universities will promote knowledge development, sharing and transfer concerning midwifery along with their contribution on overcoming challenges faced by midwifes, such as poor pay, low status and a lack of support and the gender biases that feed these challenges.
The specific objectives of the SafeMa E+ CBHE project are:
- Transfer best international practices to address local needs
- Promote clinical skills and research potential
- Awareness-raising, network-building and fundraising